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One hundred small things

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

There are at least a hundred different ways I can make each day of my life better. Out of respect for your time, I certainly won't list a hundred or more things, but a few come to mind:

*Getting up before anyone else in my family, to have a little time to ease into the day.
*Making sure the dog, and I, get a walk.
*Taking the 30 to 40 minutes to put my 9yo son to bed-making sure he brushes his teeth, etc., reading a Beverly Cleary book with him, saying a prayer, tucking him in, reminding him how much he is loved. This bedtime ritual won't last for too much longer so I need to savor this "sweet little boy" time.
*Making my bed, doing the dishes, taking out the trash, doing laundry, tidying up, etc. in a timely manner. Messiness is not my friend and it does not disappear if it is ignored.
*Touching base with loved ones even if it is just a quick text or phone call.
*Cooking at least one meal, maybe two (but not three - I am not a restaurant)
*Greeting my husband when he comes home from work, so he knows we are glad he is home.
*Acknowledging my mistakes quickly, especially when I have inadvertently hurt someone.
*Going to bed before I am too tired. If I let myself get too tired, I go to bed feeling anxious. I have my own little going-to-bed routine because, as a long time sufferer of insomnia, it is important that I look forward to going to bed, rather than dread the battle to sleep.
*Check my e-mails, answer texts, and spend time on Spark (of course).

You may notice I have not focused on food, weight, or exercise. I am, quite honestly, burned out on that front. Food and fat, cravings and compulsions, get an inordinate amount of my mental energy. Not only that, but especially in January, I feel like every other commercial, every magazine, everywhere I look, another diet is being touted, another reminder that "fat is failure" is being shoved in my face. I have been fat for awhile. I won't be non-fat anytime soon. I am not putting off a more pleasant daily life because I am not a pleasant weight.

So, Sparklers, what are some of the things you do that make your days more pleasant, and run more smoothly?
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Well done Cannie! Focusing on the positive steps and the things that bring peace and happiness, is the way to get the most out of each day. I enjoy my morning "me " time. I get my Sparktime in and exercise before my husband wakes up and the dog needs me. When my husband comes home not only do I still stop everything I'm doing to greet him, I make sure to give him a 60 sec. kiss. It helps us connect and keeps us connected. emoticon
    1864 days ago
    Wonderful list!

    Making sure that I have a list for my day.. I love to scratch off things, as I go. Makes me get more done and it feels great to see what I got done!

    Take time, each day to do a little gardening, inside or out, it is a very Zen thing for me.

    I, too stay in touch with family and friends, if only with a little text, email, card or phone call.
    Visiting Mama is daily thing, unless, my sister is in town.

    Go to bed, before I get tired, even if I miss my favorite show! I tend to eat to help stay awake so that sure is not going to help me. I also have a bedtime ritual. I read for at least 15 minutes to unwind.

    That's a bit of my list!

    Thanks, again for yours. emoticon
    1880 days ago
    exactly in the same spot. I'm burned out, bored and a little resigned which is different than defeated, I'm not feeling hopeless or anything. I love that your first thing is getting up before anyone that is something I decided on a couple of days ago but only did once. It helps not to feel resentful about facing the day ahead (that sounds bad huh?) For some of us caring for the home and ourselves and family, the "NEW YEAR" brings all kinds of excitement and peripheral motivation especially for others but the truth is, it's the same dishes, laundry and hip span. I don't mean to sound negative I mean to show that I understand. I am actively working on the smaller bite-size details as well that will just make life more pleasant.
    1882 days ago
    Fantastic blog!! Enjoy your time with your son! You are so right that the time doesn't last. Mines in college now and I miss my time with him every day.
    1882 days ago
    Love your list. I've learned to do a lot of things already that make me happy. I do get up before everyone else. I burn a candle, drink tea, listen to music and either knit or read while easing into my day. I end my day the same way. I'm up at 5AM and go to bed at 8PM.

    Hmmm...however, I could start doing a bedtime ritual with Kina. I've seemed to let that go.

    Also, I could make sure I take the dogs on a DAILY walk and not just when the mood hits me. We'd all benefit from that.

    I try to keep my home at least sanitary. I visit and browse. emoticon

    I'm going to try and incorporate some yoga back into my day. I enjoy writing in my journal but haven't in some time.

    Thanks for the blog. You've given me some things to think about this morning.
    emoticon Hattie
    1882 days ago
    Awesome blog. Obviously by the responses you have touched a nerve in so many "Sparklers"!
    Not putting off anything "UNTIL"........that is a great one!
    And when we feel fulfilled by all aspects of our lives, it is much easier to create good health habits.
    You are a winner in my book. And I "stick with the winners"!
    Thank you!!!!!!!
    1883 days ago
    Great List! emoticon
    1883 days ago
    Great list. Sounds like you're remembering what's important. I teared up at the time you want to spend with your little boy. I have a 4 year old and she's growing so fast, it's so important to take time for those little things they won't want to do soon.
    1883 days ago
    I do think that these are good priorities. I think that if you do things to make you happier everything else will fall into place.
    1883 days ago
  • DOODIE59
    Aaahh, sounds like you are taking the kindness approach to life rather than the "control it into submission" approach. Highly commendable:) And the benefits are that sometimes ... things fall into place with no effort at all.
    1883 days ago
    I think these may be weight-loss related after all, Cannie. I'm a big believer in that mental/emotional health = physical health. If you feel rested, you walk the dog, and you're cooking at home then I think you might be on the right track! Plus spending time with your little boy at night reading is much better than sitting alone eating! I know when I am tired and cranky I turn to sugar...and the cravings come mostly at night.
    1883 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/23/2013 6:07:24 PM
    You have indeed focused on the key ingredients to feeling more at peace and more fulfilled. I think that this is wonderful!
    The food and the emotions around them will likely iron out their wrinkles on its own. Wasting too much of your precisous time on it is not the best use of Cannie minutes or Cannie brain cells!

    I am taking your blog to heart tonight and sending myself to bed BEFORE 8:00 so I don't have too much EM pain saturating my body that I can't get to sleep (or say asleep). I've been trying to stay up 30-40 minutes past my usual bedtime, thinking I could pull the wool over my disease's eyes. Just ridiculous!
    So yes, tonight I will be kind to my chronic pain creep (Hee Hee), and hopefully get a few more minutes of true rest because I went to bed when I should have - and didn't stomp my feet like a kiddo. I'm an adult, and can treat myself with better care, so I can be more caring to others, etc.

    Great blog!
    1883 days ago
  • KATHY024
    Ahh yes, it is January and in every publication - January is lose weight month and reminder that fat people are loathsome creatures - I was just reading an article about how all CEO's or wanna-bees need to be thin as the hiring culture equates thin with success. Oh please...I put my boots on after the first paragraph but alas tis true in some institutions here in "computer centric" aka: Silicon Valley.

    I am waiting for then all the exercise dropouts will have had enough and those of us who are steadfast at living a better life will still be standing.....chubby but still standing!!

    Good for you at realigning your priorities!! emoticon
    1883 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/23/2013 3:54:23 PM
    Oh my dear, you have your priorities exactly in the right place. Frankly, each of those things you are doing is adding to your physical or mental/spiritual well-being, which ultimately benefits youre health. So, you're doing the right thing.

    HUGS to you. Oh my . . . my daughter Clara used to love Beverly Cleary! Brought back memories for me.
    1883 days ago
    Good priorities. Don't worry about the weight. Just eat healthy and mindfully and let your body do the rest.

    1883 days ago
    I may be unSparkiful, but I see this list as far more important than losing weight. I really do.


    1883 days ago
  • AMYB1985
    What a wonderful list! And a great attitude too. One thing I definitely DON'T miss being over here in Germany is the commercials! We get military public service announcements, but not "real" commercials. Way to focus on important things. For those of us trying to lose weight and be healthier, it seems like we can get wrapped up in a constant string of weigh-ins, calorie counts, and obsessing over eating and exercise. Good for you for keeping life in perspective!
    1883 days ago
    I love this post. Sometimes the focus needs to be on making the environment conducive to peace. We all have times we need to focus on other parts of our lives that we are struggling with, and our patterns and this really does it.

    I am reading "Does This Clutter Make my Butt Look Fat?" by Peter Walsh. He talks about the relationship between clutter and poor habits for health.

    I think what you are doing is exactly right.

    1883 days ago
  • DAISY443
    Can I copy everything you ssid except reading to a little boy (my 54 and 53 year olds are definitely past that sweet little boy stage) and making up my bed! May I just continue to shut the bedroom door and ignore it until bedtime?
    1883 days ago
    1883 days ago
    I know exactly what you are talking about...
    1883 days ago
    Its funny you wrote this out because something similar has been on my mind. I know what I can/need to do, but it certainly helps to put it down on paper (or computer). Meal planning and setting a time frame for certain goals would be a great help to me (and the rest of the members of the house, I believe). Those are my biggest concerns at the moment, although my latest blog may indicate otherwise... Doing a few simple things, and of course the hard part- following through with them- would make my life a lot easier/smoother.
    1883 days ago
    I am with you on this one.... it seems to me that there are so many things I need to take care of and food and exercise is among them but they alone does not make me feel secure and happy about life
    1883 days ago
    Your list is really great because it focuses on the most important things in life. Which are not things, of course. Family, loved ones and ourselves - not necessarily in that order - should be in our everyday "to-do" lists. And well done on shifting focus from food and fat and scale numbers if you felt burned out by them. Sometimes it can be a liberating feeling.
    1883 days ago
    I like your list. Family and a support system is important. I would love any support. I'm working on the sleep too.
    1883 days ago
    Super list-- focused on the important things in life-- loving and living! That includes sleeping!

    Thanks for sharing and showing,
    1883 days ago
    I love your list and I am with you on pretty much all except I don't have a boy to read to and kiss goodnight. You're right, it will go by fast!

    I would add meal plans and having groceries in the house so I am prepared to make a good dinner and to have fresh fruit to offset the cupcakes that magically appear!
    1884 days ago
    You are focusing on the important things in life... the things that remove stress (and emotional eating) from your life. Great job! emoticon
    1884 days ago
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